The work will be taken up under the Centrally-sponsored scheme of Urban Infrastructure Development

The Sriperumbudur town panchayat in Kancheepuram district has been chosen as a satellite town under the Centrally-sponsored scheme of Urban Infrastructure Development, according to K. P. Munusamy, Municipal Administration and Rural Development Minister.

Moving the demands for grants for his departments in the Assembly on Monday, the Minister said the objectives of the scheme were to reduce pressure on million-plus urban agglomerations by developing infrastructure facilities in satellite towns and sustain them by implementing reforms such as energy and water audit, cost-effective technologies and capacity enhancement for improved operation and maintenance.

“The scheme encourages public-private partnerships in the development of the satellite town. Reservation of 10-15 per cent of housing sites for the urban poor and promotion of the urban local body level reforms are the other objectives of the scheme,” he said. Under the scheme, three projects, covering the core sectors of water supply, underground sewerage and solid waste management, would be taken up at a cost of Rs. 101.37 crore. The cost would be shared by the Union government, the Tamil Nadu government and the Sriperumbudur Town Panchayat in the ratio of 80:10:10.

Devolution

The Minister informed the House that the amount of devolution to [10] corporations and [125] municipalities had been increased to Rs. 1,987 crore for the year 2012-2013.

Pending acceptance of the report of the Fourth State Finance Commission (SFC), the government adopted the previous year's pattern in deciding the method of devolution.

Taking a cue from recommendations of the Third SFC, the vertical sharing ratio of funds from the State's Own Tax Revenue between rural and urban local bodies had been fixed in the ratio of population -- 58:42. Further, out of 42 per cent share of the urban local bodies, the devolution grant was shared between municipal corporations, municipalities and town panchayats in the ratio of 30:41:29 respectively.

Stating that Rs. 750 crore was earmarked this year under the Integrated Urban Development Mission (IUDM) for corporations (except Chennai), municipalities and town panchayats, the Minister said the allocation was Rs. 500 crore last year. Broadly, in the previous year, 40 per cent of the total funds allocated under the IUDM was provided for the provision of basic amenities in the added areas of the expanded urban local bodies (ULBs). Apart from according priority to water supply, 18 municipalities and one corporation were included for the provision of underground sewerage schemes (UGSS). All ULBs had been given substantial allocations under solid waste management.

Referring to the government's two initiatives of coverage of all towns by the UGSS and the total elimination of open defecation by 2015, the Minister said Rs. 50 crore would be set apart this year against the sum of Rs. 14.3 crore last year.

A massive awareness campaign would also be launched.

As part of the Urban Statistics for Human Resource and Assessments (USHA), a slum survey was conducted in 34 ULBs having a population of over one lakh. It covered 1,963 slums and 4.13 lakh slum households. In the second phase, it was proposed to cover 60 ULBs, each with a population ranging between 40,000 and 1,00,000 at an overall estimated cost of Rs. 2.62 crore.

The aim of the USHA was to undertake planning, policy making, project design, formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation in the context of programmes relating to urban poverty and slums, the Minister added.

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